Breaking the record for the largest motorcycle caravan in the world, the president of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro gathered more than one hundred thousand supporters this weekend in the city of São Paulo.
This demonstration is the largest edition of a series of activities he has been carrying out, to confront the Brazilian media and establishment pollsters who claim that his popularity is at rock bottom.
The caravan that traveled 120 kilometers went from the beginning of Olavo Fontoura Avenue, north of the city, to the Ibirapuera Obelisk in front of Pedro Álvares Cabral Avenue. Jair Bolsonaro was accompanied by members of his cabinet such as the Minister of Environment, Ricardo Salles; his Minister of Infrastructure, Tarcísio De Freitas and his son, Congressman Eduardo Bolsonaro.
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After the president’s arrival at the Obelisk point, he gave a speech in which he ratified all the achievements made by his most prominent ministers: Infrastructure, Environment, Agriculture and Economy.
He recalled that his administration has also delivered works to the people of Brazil that were “from before and from now”, referring to the governments of Lula da Silva and Dilma Rousseff who never made progress on them.
He also affirmed that his administration fought against the closure of commerce and the city of São Paulo, as did the social democrat governor João Doria, to which the demonstrators responded with shouts of “Doria out!”.
He attacked such lockdown policy saying that thirty-eight million Brazilian workers were thrown into darkness, preventing them from supporting their families.
Bolsonaro took the opportunity to say that his fight is for the truth. “If it is not through the truth, you will not get anywhere.”
According to Hora Brasilia, the caravan produced about 40 million reais (approximately US$ 8 million) in different sectors of the city’s economy.
On his Twitter account, Congressman Eduardo Bolsonaro shared other images of the caravan that stretched along the Tietê highway.
For his part, former communist president Lula da Silva was quick to criticize the event. He assured that Bolsonaro makes these acts to “provoke.”
“He gathers his militiamen, many people don’t have masks, and it seems that he does it out of provocation. It’s a matter of his responsibility and I will not act like that,” said the former president.
Bolsonaro breaks world record
According to sources from the São Paulo Military Police the caravan attendees were approximately one hundred thousand, making it not only the largest caravan in Brazil but the second largest in the entire world, behind the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally which in 2015 had an estimated attendance of 739,000 motorcyclists from the 50 American states and hundreds of thousands more from other countries such as Canada, Japan, Australia, Germany, England, and other countries.
There are claims around the world that Bolsonaro is steps away from his downfall or that he is detested by the population. However, the pollster Paraná Pesquisas conducted a survey in the state of São Paulo (the most progressive state in the country) where it shows that in an electoral scenario Bolsonaro wins all scenarios.
In Rio de Janeiro the numbers change a little, but the same trend in favor of Bolsonaro is maintained in all scenarios as well.
Rafael Valera, Venezuelan, student of Political Science, political exile in São Paulo, Brazil since 2017 // Rafael Valera, venezolano, es estudiante de Ciencias Políticas y exiliado político en São Paulo, Brasil desde 2017